Last weekend this question came up at a milonga:

If we move away from Facebook, how will that work? Certainly there would be a phase where we will need to be on Facebook still, while building the alternative?

Of course, and it won’t be easy. Especially because we don’t yet really know if people (“everyone”) will just come and use the new platform, or if we will be better off with a few selected niche starter communities or use cases.

I think this is exactly how this will need to work. I don’t know the migration-eager lead user communities, yet. To get anyone to spend time and effort to build out their part of the new platform, they will need to get something back. Some value must be created in a better way than on Facebook.

When we discussed this last weekend, one major pain point we experience with Facebook came up: finding things.

  1. Finding events. The search on Facebook is so crippled that you can search for “tango marathon”, and it shows you anything, but not what you want. You can’t filter by any attributes, or sort by date. You have to scroll through results that aren’t ranked or anything. It’s really bad.
  2. Finding content. You remember an interesting discussion and you want to get back to it. This is almost impossible to find again.

For me this brings me to two key use cases an alternative platform could do better than what we have today.

  • Better events listings.
  • Better discussions.

However, this complicates things as much as it makes them easier. Neither of these use cases is a “social network” use case. Better events listings point towards sites like my (TMD), and better discussions towards a good forum, such as one hosted on Discourse, or maybe Lemmy — both of which have ActivityPub built-in, so that they could be coupled with a fediverse solution for tango.

What is it that the topic of “finding events” hasn’t been solved by TMD already?

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